Today I Made:

Apparently, people like to eat.

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Re: Today I Made:

Postby Sandry » Mon Aug 10, 2015 5:49 pm UTC

I made chocolate mochi. The recipe said it'd make fifteen servings. I do not know who the fifteen people are who would each such servings; I'm pretty sure I have about 40 servings. Holy crap, so much mochi. It was for this tea party my housemate and I put together. She made scones, raspberry sauce and blueberry clafouti, and we got some cheeses, a baguette, clotted cream, some fruit and crackers.

We had ourselves a lovely, somewhat fancy party, even if we did accidentally completely fail to get Ossau Iraty to try to pair with oolong tea (as inspired by http://www.npr.org/sections/thesalt/201 ... od-pairing ) and instead got a completely unrelated cow's milk cheese. They were right next to each other. We were apparently not awake enough when shopping.

I also made aloo ghobi, red lentil dahl and egg curry not for the purposes of partying.
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Re: Today I Made:

Postby roband » Mon Aug 10, 2015 6:11 pm UTC

Sandry wrote:red lentil dahl

I've been meaning to cook this for a long time, but never got around to it. Any tips, or just the case of following a recipe?

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Re: Today I Made:

Postby PAstrychef » Mon Aug 10, 2015 9:58 pm UTC

Cleaning out my mom's fridge yielded a nice batch of ratatouille, some BBQ chicken wings and short ribs braised in red wine. And she still has more produce than she can eat in a fortnight. "Just don't buy so much" does not seem possible.
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Re: Today I Made:

Postby Sandry » Tue Aug 11, 2015 5:27 pm UTC

roband wrote:
Sandry wrote:red lentil dahl

I've been meaning to cook this for a long time, but never got around to it. Any tips, or just the case of following a recipe?

Well, personally I don't follow a recipe. General gist:
Red lentils and water in a pot, add salt, some diced tomatoes and maybe lemon juice if you like, boil a long time, add water if you end up needing to, with the eventual goal of having the lentils basically dissolve and become non-discrete, and having something thicker than soup, but thinner than porridge in texture. In a separate (small) pot, heat whole spices until popping, then add some diced onion and ginger, fry until delicious, stir into lentils.

I use coconut oil and the spices I pick are typically black mustard seed, cumin seed, cardamom (seed, not pod), a couple whole cloves, whole cinnamon and some coriander seeds if I have them, but I advocate for picking based on what spices you like best.

Oh, and I add chopped cilantro at the end, because om nom nom cilantro.
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Re: Today I Made:

Postby roband » Tue Aug 11, 2015 7:07 pm UTC

Thanks. That's the second time today I've read about coconut oil in a recipe. I must get some.

-------------

I just made double based tortilla pizza. No sauce but sliced tomatoes with cheddar, diced pancetta and sliced spring onions (scallions). Delicious.

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Re: Today I Made:

Postby Quercus » Tue Aug 11, 2015 8:19 pm UTC

roband wrote:Thanks. That's the second time today I've read about coconut oil in a recipe. I must get some.

I saw last week that Lidl sell it, in case you can't find it where you usually shop. I got mine from Holland and Barrett before I knew this, which was a mistake because it was waay overpriced

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Re: Today I Made:

Postby roband » Tue Aug 11, 2015 9:58 pm UTC

Quercus wrote:
roband wrote:Thanks. That's the second time today I've read about coconut oil in a recipe. I must get some.

I saw last week that Lidl sell it, in case you can't find it where you usually shop. I got mine from Holland and Barrett before I knew this, which was a mistake because it was waay overpriced

I usually shop in Lidl, which is handy! What sort of size was the packaging? And any tips on the location of it would be great - near the mexican/chinese/thai stuff by any chance?

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Re: Today I Made:

Postby Quercus » Tue Aug 11, 2015 10:28 pm UTC

roband wrote:
Quercus wrote:
roband wrote:Thanks. That's the second time today I've read about coconut oil in a recipe. I must get some.

I saw last week that Lidl sell it, in case you can't find it where you usually shop. I got mine from Holland and Barrett before I knew this, which was a mistake because it was waay overpriced

I usually shop in Lidl, which is handy! What sort of size was the packaging? And any tips on the location of it would be great - near the mexican/chinese/thai stuff by any chance?

Possibly, I can't really recall, and now I'm having horrible doubts as to whether it was Lidl, or the independent food shop I went into after my last Lidl shop. The packaging was a jar, probably 300-500ml from the size. It has quite a distinctive pearlescent white look in the jar, so it should be easy to spot if it was in Lidl I saw it. Sorry for being useless.

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Re: Today I Made:

Postby roband » Wed Aug 12, 2015 8:06 am UTC

Not at all, that's a real help. I'd have been looking at ordering online otherwise, I think.

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Re: Today I Made:

Postby Moo » Wed Aug 12, 2015 8:29 am UTC

Uhm... in my humble opinion, the two months that I've owned coconut oil I have come to think of it as the more hassle alternative to cooking things in some canola/olive oil blend or a little virgin olive oil (not extra virgin) and a knob of butter. Unless you want a really really high smoking point, I find it mostly hype. I am not a super taster though (although no slouch) and I do gather many Indian cooks swear the flavour of the olive oil comes through. I have never had this problem.
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Re: Today I Made:

Postby roband » Wed Aug 12, 2015 8:44 am UTC

I've also seen recipes where it's a binding agent for granola-type bars.

Not sure I'd want to use olive oil for that.

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Re: Today I Made:

Postby Moo » Wed Aug 12, 2015 8:50 am UTC

Butter though? I guess that could be overly buttery. I usually sub half coconut oil for butter anyway, and I make a lot of stuff that calls for a lot of coconut oil (low carb). In fact I made grain free "granola" bars recently that way.

I'm not saying it's bad or don't get it, just in case you really have to go out of your way to get it, I'm saying know that it's not in my opinion the be all and end all.
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Re: Today I Made:

Postby Quercus » Wed Aug 12, 2015 10:05 am UTC

I use it as a binding/setting agent for making those protein-rich energy ball things at home (they are my breakfast substitute for if I'm in too much of a rush to make breakfast). For most general-purpose stuff that doesn't require solidity at room temperature. I'll use other fats/oils, like Moo.

Incidentally, coconut oil is also a great massage oil, but I guess that's off topic for this thread.


Edit: Today I made more french toast. I'm getting better at it every time I make it - I added more spices this time (especially cinnamon), and an extra pinch of sugar, with passion fruit to accompany the fresh nectarine slices because I have run out of blueberries.

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Re: Today I Made:

Postby freezeblade » Wed Aug 12, 2015 3:35 pm UTC

I use coconut oil for stir-frys mostly, along with the fat source for some breads. Thai-style stir-fries just don't taste the same without it.

I also use it when making rice, along with kefir lime leaves and cardomom as aromatics.
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Re: Today I Made:

Postby Sandry » Wed Aug 12, 2015 7:03 pm UTC

I've never seen it as requiring fuss other than one more dirty spoon to scoop it out when cooking. *shrug*

And definitely for the way I deal with spices and onions I really specifically wouldn't want to use butter for that application - it would burn/brown too much.

Along this wavelength, I've always felt that ghee was way too much of a bother when I could just use coconut oil, so there's that. But I do generally find that olive oil has sufficient flavour that I really don't want to use it for cooking that isn't Italian or Spanish or otherwise olive-oil-flavour-compatible.
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Re: Today I Made:

Postby PAstrychef » Mon Aug 17, 2015 12:26 am UTC

I started out making a Thai dish of pork sautéed with loads of garlic and black pepper. Then I added some leftover boiled potatoes, cubed. Then I added a bag of spinach I had thawed to make sag paneer, but hadn't gotten to because of family stuff. Ended up with a hodgepodge, luckily very tasty.
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Re: Today I Made:

Postby Moo » Mon Aug 17, 2015 9:02 am UTC

I have been off on medical leave so people have been bringing food, this is the best.
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Re: Today I Made:

Postby Bakemaster » Tue Aug 18, 2015 4:40 am UTC

Coconut oil apparently changes quite a bit when processed at high heat, in terms of health implications. They were interviewing a lipids researcher on the radio a month or two ago who had interesting things to say about it. Apparently back in the day the only form in which it arrived in the US was highly processed, so it got a bad reputation as unhealthy, and now it's much easier to get virgin coconut oil which is somehow good for you. Of course, it has a lower smoke point than the highly processed variety.

I really like the bit of flavor that it lends to some recipes.

Anyway, yesterday I made rice and two new recipes from my Elephant Walk cookbook: Cha Samdaik Bandos (stir-fried pork with bean sprouts) and Nyuom Mee Souah (bean thread noodle salad). Actually, it's possible I've made the latter before. Both were really good. I shouldn't be surprised, this book is excellent, even if I always have to sub or omit one or two ingredients.
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Re: Today I Made:

Postby Nath » Thu Aug 20, 2015 9:01 am UTC

Too lazy to put on pants, so I made a scrounged-up late-night dinner of Greek salad and a fluffy yogurt omelette. Proper Greek salad is so good, and so frequently screwed up.

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Re: Today I Made:

Postby Zohar » Thu Aug 20, 2015 12:39 pm UTC

Made some jumbo pasta shells filled with ricotta, spinach and coarsely ground walnuts, covered with tomato sauce. And cheddar, because why not?
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Re: Today I Made:

Postby Moo » Thu Aug 20, 2015 1:02 pm UTC

That sounds fantastic.

Last night, because it was just the two of us and I was devoid of inspiration, the Mooling and I had scrambled eggs for dinner. When I asked him what he'd like tonight he said scrambled eggs. I'm in, little guy, I'm in.
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Re: Today I Made:

Postby Zohar » Thu Aug 20, 2015 1:38 pm UTC

Alex doesn't like scrambled eggs (or eggs in any form other than omelette or, rarely, poached) and sometimes I have trouble remembering why I married him.
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Re: Today I Made:

Postby Quercus » Sun Aug 23, 2015 7:46 pm UTC

Made a salmon dish I'm working on perfecting. Came out significantly better this time round. It's salmon, asparagus and poached egg, but with Japanese-type flavours, which works surprisingly well. This time I remembered to give the salmon a dry rub before pan frying (chilli, chives, ginger, garlic, salt and pepper), and thickened and emulsified the sauce for the veg and egg with a tiny bit of arrowroot (rice vinegar, a little sugar, diluted sesame oil, garlic, soy sauce and pepper). I also managed to get the salmon to a perfect 60oC, so it was really tender and flaky.

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Re: Today I Made:

Postby Echo244 » Mon Aug 24, 2015 8:36 am UTC

I got slightly experimental yesterday and made some salt and pepper aubergine. Turned out surprising good - the aubergine takes away some of the heat so you can add even more pepper, and really let the fruitiness comes through.
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Re: Today I Made:

Postby Zohar » Mon Aug 24, 2015 12:44 pm UTC

Yesterday we made some zucchini kufta in tomato-coconut sauce. It was delicious, but we were hoping the quantity would last for a few days, and we ended up finishing all of it yesterday, except for one packed lunch for today.

The kufta were particularly hard to make, though. The binding elements potatoes, chickpea flour and rice flour, and they seemed sufficiently sticky but I guess not really. The recipe didn't ask to drain the zucchinis either, which if we ever repeat it in the future we'll do. It just said mix everything together and fry in oil. Seems like they wanted deep-frying from what we saw in comments later. We used a pretty good enamel pan for it and the first batch stuck all over, so we decided to scrape it, reincorporate it with the rest of the thing and bake it instead, which turned out reasonable. I guess it was supposed to end up more falafel-y...
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Re: Today I Made:

Postby Sandry » Mon Aug 24, 2015 4:31 pm UTC

This weekend I made a couple pizzas (one just peppers, onions, fresh mozz, the other a silly breakfast pizza with egg, zucchini, onion, fake bacon, tater tots, eggs and a couple cheeses). I tried garlicking up the dough, but didn't really do enough. Next time I will be less subtle.
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Re: Today I Made:

Postby Quercus » Mon Aug 24, 2015 4:55 pm UTC

Sandry wrote:Next time I will be less subtle.

I'm not really a fan of subtlety in garlic - in most situations which call for garlic I'm of the opinion that it should be whacked in there in great quantity, ideally raw. Breath mints afterwards are a necessity.

(to be fair I usually tone it down a bit when I'm cooking for others - except my dad and my aunt, both of whom like garlic as much as I do).

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Re: Today I Made:

Postby Decker » Tue Aug 25, 2015 5:04 am UTC

My new favorite way to boil eggs. The white is set and the yolk has kind of a custard texture.
As soon as they came to a boil, I killed the heat and let them sit, covered, for four minutes, then the ice water bath.
I realize that boiling eggs is one of the simplest possible things you can do in the kitchen, but this is very satisfying for me. Peel, slice in half, bit of salt, eat.
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Re: Today I Made:

Postby Zohar » Tue Aug 25, 2015 12:36 pm UTC

It's not that simple, as evidenced by all the "how to boil an egg" tutorials online.
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Re: Today I Made:

Postby Quercus » Tue Aug 25, 2015 12:43 pm UTC

Boiling/poaching an egg is one of the most timing-critical things you do in a kitchen. 15 seconds either way can make a difference to how it turns out (at least for soft boiling - hard boiling is easy). Poaching in particular also needs fine heat control to keep the water just under the boil, and good dexterity to pour the egg into a pan in such a way that it forms a nice compact ball rather than spreading out into a gooey mess. It's not as easy as people think it is (it becomes easy once you've got the tricks nailed - but it isn't easy before that).

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Re: Today I Made:

Postby Decker » Tue Aug 25, 2015 4:47 pm UTC

Zohar wrote:It's not that simple, as evidenced by all the "how to boil an egg" tutorials online.

Quercus wrote:Boiling/poaching an egg is one of the most timing-critical things you do in a kitchen. 15 seconds either way can make a difference to how it turns out (at least for soft boiling - hard boiling is easy). Poaching in particular also needs fine heat control to keep the water just under the boil, and good dexterity to pour the egg into a pan in such a way that it forms a nice compact ball rather than spreading out into a gooey mess. It's not as easy as people think it is (it becomes easy once you've got the tricks nailed - but it isn't easy before that).

Oh, good. That makes me feel better.
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Re: Today I Made:

Postby Angua » Tue Aug 25, 2015 5:18 pm UTC

I always google how to boil an egg before I do it, because I always forget what the timings are supposed to be.
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Re: Today I Made:

Postby Quercus » Tue Aug 25, 2015 5:37 pm UTC

Angua wrote:I always google how to boil an egg before I do it, because I always forget what the timings are supposed to be.


To be honest I would probably have to do that these days too - I switched to poaching a while back as that way I don't have to deal with the shell, and trying to scoop the egg out of it which always spills some yolk, which I hate doing because the yolk is the best bit.

For poaching the time is about 3:30, but I always confirm that visually and by testing firmness with the back of a fork as well. Sometimes it needs an extra 30 seconds.

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Re: Today I Made:

Postby Nath » Wed Aug 26, 2015 6:53 am UTC

Ratatouille. I tried the old-school method where you cook each vegetable separately and combine them at the end. (Sort of; I made a sauce out of onions, garlic, tomatoes, and basil, and added separately-sauteed eggplants, Italian zucchini, and green peppers at the last minute.) To my surprise, the results are a bit different. It's less of a smoosh-it-all-together kind of stew; each vegetable stays distinct from the others. Each vegetable is also cooked in drier conditions, so you get more browning and blistering. This might be a good thing or a bad thing, depending on your taste. I like it, and I think I'll stick with this method unless I'm in a hurry. Takes a lot of oil, though.

To go with, crispy fried eggs, store-bought semi-baked bread, and a Sazerac.

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Re: Today I Made:

Postby Thesh » Wed Aug 26, 2015 4:01 pm UTC

Quercus wrote:Boiling/poaching an egg is one of the most timing-critical things you do in a kitchen. 15 seconds either way can make a difference to how it turns out (at least for soft boiling - hard boiling is easy). Poaching in particular also needs fine heat control to keep the water just under the boil, and good dexterity to pour the egg into a pan in such a way that it forms a nice compact ball rather than spreading out into a gooey mess. It's not as easy as people think it is (it becomes easy once you've got the tricks nailed - but it isn't easy before that).


Admittedly, I looked up how to hard boil an egg online. Not that I didn't know how to hard boil an egg, but because I got really frustrated one time when I lost about 40% of the whites of one egg in the shelling process.
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Re: Today I Made:

Postby Quercus » Wed Aug 26, 2015 4:29 pm UTC

Thesh wrote:Admittedly, I looked up how to hard boil an egg online. Not that I didn't know how to hard boil an egg, but because I got really frustrated one time when I lost about 40% of the whites of one egg in the shelling process.


That's happened to me too on occasion. I always assumed it was to do with variations in the eggs, rather than in the cooking - should I be altering how I hard boil eggs?

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Re: Today I Made:

Postby speising » Wed Aug 26, 2015 4:37 pm UTC

Kenji has this to say about the subject:
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Re: Today I Made:

Postby Thesh » Wed Aug 26, 2015 4:44 pm UTC

Yeah, that's the exact same article I found at the time.

http://www.seriouseats.com/2014/05/the- ... -eggs.html
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Re: Today I Made:

Postby Quercus » Wed Aug 26, 2015 5:11 pm UTC

That's good to know, and more convenient, because I can boil the water for the hot start really quickly in my 3kW kettle which you Americans can't have because of your silly 120V power system.

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Re: Today I Made:

Postby freezeblade » Wed Aug 26, 2015 6:13 pm UTC

Quercus wrote:That's good to know, and more convenient, because I can boil the water for the hot start really quickly in my 3kW kettle which you Americans can't have because of your silly 120V power system.


Unless you've got 240 plugs in your house, like I do. The perks of living in an industrial neighborhood.

I actually have a kettle that sits on my stovetop, which is gas, heats up pretty quick.
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